Divine Vision: some things can only happen in Gods Perfect Timing!!!!
It is now June 2016, and I have survived the grade four GBM brain tumor for 16 years (dx June 2000)! My last recurrence was August 2015 and was treated with Gamma Knife Radiation. Within four months after the Gamma Knife, the GBM shrunk down to nothing seen.
Since then, my brain MRIs have continued to look the same, no seen tumor! Unfortunately, I’ve started having simple partial seizures, from the radiation damage. So I have had to start taking anti-seizure meds for the first time since I was diagnosed.
Currently, I am not on any “western medicine” treatments. I continue to fight the cancer by taking many supplements, also some “off label” prescriptions, exercise 5 days a week, eat an organic low carbohydrate diet, leaning on God for strength, and other “alternative” treatments.
You can read about what I do to fight the cancer on my web page at www.cherylbroyles-gbm.com Have HOPE you fellow brain tumor fighters, don’t listen to the statistics. I was told I would die within a year, and now I’ve survived the GBM 16 years! All is possible. And I am still out having FUN with my family. I am over here in Oregon USA cheering you guys on – GO GO GO. https://virtualtrials.com/surv
This thought came to my mind this morning as I was walking through the Golden Gate Park to UCSF for my 11:30 am radiation appointment. I …was amazed that overall I felt very well. Way better than what I had expected when I first showed up to San Francisco.
I was walking faster, my cognitive abilities were clearer, and my emotions were way higher than I had expected, for the beginning of my 4th week of radiation.
As I walked this morning I realized that my own expectations could really mislead me; they could really decay me into less and less.
I had expected that during the radiation I would be very fatigued, I would be in bed all day long, I would have no energy to cook dinner, or take a shower, or pretty much anything at all. That’s what I mentally had told myself. I had low expectations.
And that was how it started out. I’d say my first 3 days in San Francisco, getting ready for the radiation treatment; my expectations put me on a downhill fall. Steep and fast. And I did not like what was to come.
I practiced walking to UCSF from the apartment where I was staying. I’d drag my feet and felt very fatigued already, even though the radiation had not even started. I timed myself and it took me 45 minutes to get to UCSF. I still did not expect much out of myself. I worried that once the radiation began I probably would not even have the energy to walk, but would need to take the MUNI transportation.
Actually when I first showed up, my thoughts were all about me; me, me and me. Could “I” handle it, could “I” take care of myself, could “I” remember how to get to the hospital? (I was going to be alone at times, because I wanted my husband to spend time in Oregon too so that my son Clint would not have to be alone for over a month.) I did not have much confidence in myself; I had very low expectations about myself.
This morning as I walked, I looked back trying to figure out when it changed. Up until this morning I had not really given it much thought. It had just changed from bad to good. And WOW there was a big difference.
My walk to UCSF was 10 minutes faster than when I started. I had the energy to head out after the radiation to go to the beach, Pier 39, doing loops all around the Golden Gate Park bird watching. (Well there were some days I was more tired, because I had done too much the day before!)
As I walked I got a big smile as I really noticed and acknowledged the huge difference between my initial expectations verses how I felt now. What changed it? Then I knew.
I realized that in the beginning, it was all about “me” and my abilities (or lack thereof). After moving into the apartment and settling in, thank goodness my attention changed. Well, it’s actually thanks to God.
Pretty soon after my arrival I had gotten back into starting my day in prayer and reading the Bible. As soon as I got away from thinking about “me”, and got back to starting the day thinking about my Lord Jesus Christ, things changed.
I love the verse – James 4:10 “Humble yourself before the Lord, and he will lift you up.”
When I was in prayer to my Lord, I truly humbled myself and gave it all over to Him. And as the Bible says, I was lifted up! I had more energy. I began walking faster. I smiled more often. I even began singing at times (as long as no one else could hear! Well the birds could).
It’s amazing how much my expectations changed. Well I should not say changed, I would say they just went away! Like a burden taken of my shoulders. Now I’m not thinking about myself, but about Jesus and the strength He blesses me with.
It has not been easy Surviving Brain Tumors for 17 Years
It has not been easy in the Very Hard Fight
But it has been Worth It!
This June 2017 – I have officially become a 17 year survivor. Over my 17 years living in the “brain tumor world”, I have been blessed with wonderful times and unfortunately hit with indescribable bad times too.
Blessings came along with being a mother of my two boys; now 18 & 20 years old. Blessing came along with being married with my husband for 27 years. (Ten years before being diagnosed with the GBM, and 17 years after) Blessing came along with spending time with my amazing family and friends. Too many blessing to list!
However over the 17 years living in the “brain tumor world” I’ve been hit hard with extreme challenges, at times brought close to giving up; ready to be dead. The bad experiences that come along with fighting brain tumors are too mentally and physically complex to describe.
This year in 2017 I’m still being attacked by the cancer.
In April I went through 4 weeks of radiation fighting my 7th recurrence of a brain tumor. This time it’s a new type of tumor for me, an “aPXA”; and at new location for me, in my pituitary (In the past the GBM was always located in my left temporal lobe).
Battling the aPXA, I’ve been challenged by new and very hard effects that come along with damage to my pituitary (which is very different than damage to my left temporal lobe). The aPXA is inoperable; consequently I went through 4 weeks of radiation. (I never thought I could have additional radiation after going through 6 weeks of it back in 2000).
In May I went through surgery to remove skin cancer on my scalp, caused by 6 weeks of radiation treatment back in 2000.
My last MRI (a couple weeks ago) was the hardest one I’ve gone through over the 17 years; with the threat of both the GBM recurring, and/or the aPXA continuing to grow. Both are located in different parts of my brain; and also with seriously different effects.
Before the MRI, I had to think hard about what decisions I would need to make if both showed up aggressively growing. At that point the doctors would think the fight was over and that It was time to give up. How would it affect my family? My mind was going all over the place.
I was completely overwhelmed. I felt like I could not breathe or think. I was also hit hard by depression. I guess what I’m trying to say is, fighting the ugly brain tumor comes along with SEVERE trials; both physically and emotionally. I know all my fellow brain tumor fighters would agree with this claim.
Now that I’m back home and settled in, my thoughts came to the conclusion – I never, never, never regret my past decisions to keep up the fight. I know I would have missed SO many wonderful times (even while living in the “brain tumor world”) if I had given up when I had my 1st recurrence, or my 2ndrecurrence, or my 3rd , my 4th, my 5th, my 6th, and now my 7th recurrence.
If I give up now, how many blessing would I missed over my next days, or months, or maybe even my next years? When I was diagnosed with the GBM back in 2000, my doctors never thought I would make it 17 years! So now why not 20 years!
I don’t know what the future brings, but my decision is, I will not give up. I can have hope! It’s so comforting that Jesus Christ gives me hope. 2 Corinthians 3:12 “Since we have such a hope, we are very bold.” Hebrews 11:1 “Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”
What good does it do?
Worrying has been hitting me hard lately. I’ve been fighting the GBM for 17 years, but I’m worrying more than ever before. This morning my ribs began to hurt and it felt like I could not even breathe.
Covered with fear that something physically dangerous was happening; I sat down in desperation. Is this an emergency? Should I call my husband at work? Then I felt stupid realizing that I could just be having a panic attack. Yes I know that panic attacks can be triggered by worrying; and lately I’ve been covered with worry, worry, and more worry.
For example, worrying about my next MRI in August. Worrying about what the future brings. Worry about now fighting two types of tumors; the GBM in my left temporal lobe, and the aPXA in my pituitary. Worry about the possibility becoming blind from the four weeks of radiation to my pituitary. Over the last 17 years, the immense worry that’s hit me the hardest – Can I successfully fight hard enough to add more days to my life, so I can continue to be a loving wife to my husband and a loving mother to my two boys?
What quickly came to mind this morning was a historical saying from a wise man, “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?”
That saying really cried out to me, so I strongly cried out to myself, “STOP worrying! NOW! It obviously does me no good!” Making that claim began taking the weight off my chest. It was so empowering by yelling it out loud to myself.
Personally realizing how damaging worrying can be. I’ve been too blind to see what I’ve been doing to myself. Stepping back and being aware of it; seemed to give my sight back!
Thinking about my past, I remember being positively touched by seeing the joy and happiness around me. A little kid yelling in joy as they run around a playground. Two teenagers doing something sneaky, thinking that no one saw them, quietly laughing together (yes we adults do see it!). Being in a restaurant and seeing a couple of middle aged people smiling and laughing together. Seeing an older person observing a younger person doing something ridiculous, then smiling and thinking to themselves, “They need to learn”.
I smiled and felt better just thinking of others smiling, realizing the importance of getting out to “see” the joy around me; letting the joy pour onto me, seeping in. I shouldn’t be worrying about adding time to my life; that gains me nothing. My new goal is to not be blind, instead looking around and smiling with others.
OK, I’m disappointed that it seems I’ve only been posting negative things lately. I asked myself, can sharing what I learned this morning help anyone else? I hope so. Even if one person’s day is uplifted by what my fingers typed, that alone gives me a smile.
Jesus Christ said in Luke 12:25 “Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life?”
Video of my 5th brain surgery. If you have a recurrence and need to go back into surgery again, keep up the HOPE! It’s possible to survive recurrences, I’ve make it through 7 !
Post-traumatic glioma: Report of one case and review of the literature
Department of Neurosurgery, Second Affiliated Hospital, College of Medicine, Zhejiang University, # 88 Jiefang Road, Hangzhou City, 310009, PR China
Zhou B, Liu W. Post-traumatic glioma: Report of one case and review of the literature. Int J Med Sci 2010; 7(5):248-250. doi:10.7150/ijms.7.248. Available from http://www.medsci.org/v07p0248
How do brain tumors form?Clinton Baird: This is a very complicated question, and in brain tumors we don’t have the answers in the same way as we have in other types of tumors or cancers in the body for example lung cancer. We know that people that have tobacco use have a much higher risk of developing lung cancer. Even though someone who never smoked can develop lung cancer, it’s much more common to develop lung cancer in the setting of smoking.In the brain, we don’t have as good of a understanding of how brain tumors form. At the cellular level, we understand the genetics of what’s going on when a brain tumor forms, if there’s different tumor suppressor genes that are knocked out and different oncogenes, these are proteins and cellular mechanisms within the cell that control the growth of cells.These will become damaged, and then the cells allow to grow out of control and this is what will cause the formation of a tumor and cancer. But we don’t understand, are unable to relate direct risk factors to the formation of a brain cancer in the vast majority of settings. There are a few unusual hereditary conditions in which people have a propensity to form malignant brain tumors. These are very rare and most people do not have any known cause of their malignant brain tumor.There are also some other situations in which someone has received radiation to the brain for another reason or for a tumor that was treated and cured or controlled with the radiation long enough that they developed what’s called a secondary brain tumor, and those are thought to be caused from the radiation itself.
My new research will be about studying the brain !!!!!
Aflatoxin losses to livestock and poultry producers from aflatoxin-contaminated feeds include death and the more subtle effects of immune system suppression, reduced growth rates, and losses in feed efficiency. Other adverse economic effects of aflatoxins include lower yields for food and fiber crops .
In addition, the abilitiy of aflatoxins to cause cancer and related diseases in humans given their seemingly unavoidable occurrence in foods and feeds make the prevention and detoxification of these mycotoxins one of the most challenging toxicology issues of present time. https://draxe.com/aflatoxin/